State reports 353 new COVID-19 cases, 2 new deaths

Cases on Kenai Peninsula continue downward trend

The Alaska Department of Health and Social Services reported 353 new cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday, as well as two additional deaths of Alaska residents tied to the virus.

The state has now seen a total of 48,899 COVID-19 cases since the novel coronavirus pandemic began, according to state data. That includes 1,565 case that have been among visitors to the state.

Of the new cases announced Wednesday, 11 were among nonresidents.

The two people whose deaths the state reported Wednesday were Anchorage residents, according to state data.

Only one of the new cases reported Wednesday is in a Homer resident. All cases reported each day reflect the number of cases that get reported to the state the day before.

The addition of the two COVID-19-related deaths announced Wednesday brings the total number of Alaskans who have died with the illness to 219. One nonresident has died inside the state of Alaska with COVID-19.

Since the pandemic began in Alaska, a total of 1,054 Alaskans and 20 nonresidents have been hospitalized for COVID-19. That includes those who have since died or since recovered. As of Wednesday, the state reported 86 people were actively being hospitalized for COVID-19, along with seven people being hospitalized for suspected cases. There were six people across the state on ventilators for COVID-19 as of Wednesday.

Statewide, there are 40 adult ICU beds still available. In Anchorage, there are only seven. According to state data, 10.2% of all people hospitalized in the state are currently hospitalized due to COVID-19.

Of the new COVID-19 cases announced Wednesday, there are 112 in Anchorage, 55 in Fairbanks, 43 in Wasilla, 11 in Eagle River, 10 in Utqiagvik, nine each in Chugiak and Palmer, eight in Kodiak, seven each in North Pole, Kotzebue, Juneau and Bethel, six each in Kenai and Unalaska, five each in Ketchikan and the Kusilvak Census Area, four in Soldotna, three each in the Fairbanks North Star Borough, Big Lake and Petersburg, two each in Girdwood, Nikiski, Delta Junction, the Yukon-Koyukuk Census Area, Willow and the Prince of Wales-Hyder Census Area, and one each in Homer, Sterling, the northern Kenai Peninsula, Cordova, the Chugach region, the Copper River region, Houston, Sitka, the Bethel Census Area and the Dillingham Census Area.

Of the new COVID-19 cases reported in nonresidents on Wednesday, one is in Anchorage, four are in the Yakutat and Hoonah-Angoon area, and six are unknown.

Since the pandemic began, the state has conducted more than 1.3 million COVID-19 tests, and as of Wednesday had a seven-day average positivity rate of 4.99%.

The seven-day average positivity rate on the peninsula is 4.98%.

The average turnaround time for tests processed through the state laboratory is currently 1.9 days, according to state data.

As of Tuesday, South Peninsula Hospital had conducted a total of 16,172 COVID-19 tests, with 15,462 of those coming back negative, according to hospital data. A total of 466 tests have come back positive since the pandemic began, and 244 tests are still pending.

Testing on the Kenai Peninsula:

Free COVID-19 tests are offered 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. seven days a week at the lower level of the South Peninsula Hospital Specialty Clinic, at 4201 Bartlett Street, Homer. Please use the Danview Avenue access. Tests are for those who have had recent travel out of state, have been exposed to someone with a confirmed case of COVID-19, have new onset of any symptom related to COVID-19, or have a provider referral. See the complete list of eligible individuals at or call the COVID information line at 235-0235. Please call and pre-register before coming if and when possible.

Testing is also available through the SVT Health & Wellness clinics in Homer, Seldovia and Anchor Point. Call ahead at 907-226-2228.

In Ninilchik, NTC Community Clinic is providing testing on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. The testing is only for those traveling, symptomatic, needing testing for medical procedures, or with a known exposure after seven days. Only 20 tests will be offered per day. To make an appointment to be tested at the NTC Community Clinic, call 907-567-3970.

On the central peninsula, testing is available at Capstone Family Clinic, K-Beach Medical, Soldotna Professional Pharmacy, Central Peninsula Urgent Care, Peninsula Community Health Services, Urgent Care of Soldotna, the Kenai Public Health Center and Odyssey Family Practice. Call Kenai Public Health at 907-335-3400 for information on testing criteria for each location.

In Seward, testing is available at Providence Seward, Seward Community Health Center, Glacier Family Medicine and North Star Health Clinic.

Reach Megan Pacer at